Keep opposing that damn War on Women. If you can figure out where the lines are or ever were. Just under her bust, I’m thinking.
My own definition of hysteria is when people are more interested in emoting about something than doing something about it. (Case in point, Redskins.)
The Ray Rice thing has become a ridiculous circus. Last night, CBS analyst James Brown — yet another Harvard twit — thought it was his place to lecture all men about their responsibility to stem the tide of this guerrilla war on women.
Nonsense. But so is the pushback. Rush Limbaugh is still arguing that all the fuss is part of a liberal conspiracy to take down the NFL. He may be right in that but he’s still missing the point.
Just to begin a real discussion, read this piece from beginning to end. It’s called “The Third Rail of Domestic Violence.”
There is one vital element of the domestic violence dialogue that ignites torrents of unwarranted disapproval: an examination of the dynamic of the women who stay with, and even defend, their attackers.
Attempts to explore what leads otherwise smart women to remain in injurious and possibly fatal relationships is met with bizarre condemnation. A popular reaction has been that this somehow “blames the victims.”
Blames them? This is an attempt to save them.
This is particularly peculiar criticism in view of the fact that there is actual victim-blaming to be found. Amid the week of reaction to Rice’s decking of his then-fiancée, there has been a smattering of observations along the lines of: Did she provoke him? Wasn’t she aware he had a short temper? Shouldn’t women navigate their irascible men with greater skill?
Now that’s victim-blaming, or at least an attempt to pass onto women some responsibility for preventing their own clobberings. It is, of course, nonsense.
But how do we get to a place where it is frowned upon to ask about the abundance of women— some of whom can be found in cemeteries— who keep themselves available for repeated beatings?
Perhaps we are in no mood to impose anything on victims that even looks like an obligation or even a strong suggestion. More likely, we are hesitant to wander into delicate territory in this era of reflexive, contrived offense.
But we must.
We have a societal responsibility to deliver a message to men that women are never, ever a proper target for physical violence… But there is also a vital signal that must be delivered to women: Get out.
This is a message that must be delivered with an understanding of its complexities. Getting out is not always easy. Before we get to the mental pathologies that compel some women to stay willingly, there are plenty of women who would love to make an escape but cannot, at least not immediately.
Their kids are in the house. They have no money of their own. There is no trusted friend or relative nearby. We should always know that our advice to get out of an abusive relationship is fraught with possible obstacles, including an enormous elevation of risk.
The men poisoning these relationships are often unhinged control freaks. If living with them on a daily basis is a hazard, imagine the consequences when the woman decides she’s had it and hits the road. If the exit is foiled or the wayward woman is found, the results can be unspeakable. So let’s not just say “get out” and walk away satisfied with our wise advice.
All true. But there are several other variables — and constants — that need to be taken into account.
Begin with constants. Domestic violence has occurred since the beginning of the human race. Because men and women have violent differences all the time. Often with odd unintended consequences. There has never been (contrary to feminist wishful thinking) a matriarchal society. There have been matrilineal societies, notably the Picts, which passed property through the female line. Pictish girls were routinely married and slain for their property in preteen years. Why there are no more Picts.
The Egyptians and Easter Islanders had similar problems, inheritance customs that led to royal/aristocratic incest and fatal genetic problems.
Another attempted solution to sexual dimorphism was dowries, which continue to thrive in the most primitive Stone Age cultures on earth. Which also leads to resentment and frequent violence, although most commonly female subjugation to the level of near slavery.
So, women owning property and women as property are equally a problem. Female equality might seem to be an answer. But it is, culturally, an enlightenment innovation. Which carries its own unintended consequences. Enter the variables.
Poverty is the most gender leveling thing there is. The woman needs a protector. The man needs a servant and baby maker. It returns us to our Cro-Magnon roots. The second biggest influence is lack of education. When the language of expressing emotion does not exist, violence becomes an earlier resort.
If you do not have words to describe your feelings, you will express your feelings physically.
Both men and women will regard this as appropriate. It becomes, “How we can communicate.” A subject nobody will touch. A fourth rail if you will.
Yeah, there are screwed up middle class white guys who beat their women. But they are fewer, as are the women who expect that and regard it as a normal response. It’s a different case with the poor. They don’t identify their abusers as psychopaths. They regard them as people they can also throw things at and, if need be, cut them up in their sleep. Eleven out of twelve of the most common acts of domestic violence are performed by women. It’s another way of talking.
I, too, am touched by the statistic that one in five American women may have been subjected to domestic violence by a man. But I also know something about statistics. It does NOT mean that one in five men abuses women. Unless you’re hanging onto the idea that all women connect with one man and cleave to him until he kills her.
I can tell you the whole class of “nice guys” is sick to death of the whole bad boy schtick. Why men may not be as upset about domestic violence as James Brown would like us to be. If you seek out people who disrespect and abuse you, precisely because they disrespect and abuse you, maybe our empathy capacity has been damaged.
“6% of women and 4% of men reported having experienced domestic abuse in the past year, equivalent to an estimated one million female victims of domestic abuse and 600,000 male victims”.
Campaigners claim that men are often treated as “second-class victims” and that many police forces and councils do not take them seriously. “Male victims are almost invisible to the authorities such as the police, who rarely can be prevailed upon to take the man’s side,” said John Mays of Parity. “Their plight is largely overlooked by the media, in official reports and in government policy, for example in the provision of refuge places – 7,500 for females in England and Wales but only 60 for men.”
The official figures underestimate the true number of male victims, Mays said. “Culturally it’s difficult for men to bring these incidents to the attention of the authorities. Men are reluctant to say that they’ve been abused by women, because it’s seen as unmanly and weak.”
Still worrying about the one in five women stat? Six percent is not twenty percent. How does that happen?
These days, women have many contacts with men. They have more opportunity to indulge their age-old predilection for bad boys. Bad boys are attractive because they they are bad, get in trouble, ignore the women attracted to them, and, well, beat them when they’re in a mood or something.
Exhibit I. Rihanna chose to return to the thug who did this to her.
She loves Chris. Just like Janay loves Ray.
When women actually get their act together, we nice guys will be glad to work with you about things which MUST be done, including making restraining orders stick, making local police departments care about frightened wives with broken arms and broken noses, and figuring out how to rescue even the moronic fools who think a right cross is something like a kiss. Not to mention shutting up the libs who pretend to protect women when they try to deny threatened women the right to own a protective firearm. Why do you think the term equalizer was ever coined?
Alternatively, learn the English language and your rights under the law. And get yourself a gun for that moment when a restraining order proves itself a mere piece of paper.
Final Note: The players of the NFL are arrested at a lesser rate than the population at large. Same goes for domestic violence arrests. Mostly, they’re decent if imperfect citizens.
Bet you didn’t know that.